The sports icon was only 59 years old.
Saračević was the coach of the Podravka Vegeta women’s team. On Sunday he and his players celebrated a derby win against Lokomotiva Koprivnica (32:29) in the Croatian league. In the evening he drove goalie coach Barbara Stancin home. At a traffic light he collapsed and was taken to a hospital. After 40 minutes, the doctors had to give up trying to resuscitate.
The former handball hero celebrated his greatest successes with the national teams of Yugoslavia and Croatia and won Olympic silver at the 1988 Summer Games. With the Croatian national team, he won gold at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta. In total, the backcourt player played 145 games for Yugoslavia (200 goals) and 75 games for Croatia (244 goals).
Croatia’s national coach and former team-mate Slavko Goluža is shocked: “I am shocked. I wanted to call him after the game to congratulate him. We always spoke on the phone after the games, but this time the Podravka fitness trainer called me and said what was happening I don’t want to talk about who Saračević was as a player because he was a great person, I will never be able to thank him for everything he did for me and I will forever remember the moments I was with spent him. “